Protesting against demonetisation, Left parties today accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of pushing the country into an "unprecedented financial turmoil" and questioned why he was not speaking in Parliament on the issue.
During their protest here as part of "Jan Aakrosh Diwas" against demonetization, seven Left parties including the CPI(M) and CPI decried the invalidation of Rs 1000 and Rs 500 currency notes as "anti-poor and pro-corporate" and demanded that the government let people use the old notes until it makes new notes available.
"We believe the Prime Minister has brought the country to a standstill. He has imposed 'deshbandi' (holding country hostage) with 'notebandi' (demonetisation).
"90 per cent of our people do cash transactions every day. Their lives have been hit quite hard. We are protesting against all this," CPI general secretary Sitaram Yechury said during the protest.
Continuing their attack on the Prime Minister over his alleged absence from Parliament, where opposition MPs are demanding that he reply to a debate on demonetization, the Left parties questioned his "silence" on the floor of the House, calling him "Narendra Maun (silent) Modi".
Yechury claimed that while the November 8 decision has farmers and daily wage earners reeling under hardships, the stated objectives of demonetization are unlikely to be achieved.
He suggested the government ushering in Rs 2000 currency note will rather "double" corruption.
Yechury reiterated the charge that BJP and "those who had black money" were "aware" of the Prime Minister's move.
"The BJP (reportedly) purchased lands in the run up to the decision in Bihar. Those with black money had already made arrangements. How come they were aware of demonetization move?" he asked.
The Rajya Sabha member asked the government to crack the whip on those who have black money stashed in banks abroad and also act against corporate houses which have faltered on payments of bank loans.
Referring to Modi calling his predecessor Manmohan Singh as "Maunmohan Singh" during poll campaigns, Yechury said the situation was different now as Singh has spoken on demonetization in the Rajya Sabha last week but the PM was silent.
"Now it was a coincidence, when Singh spoke in Parliament, the Prime Minister was silent, (he) became Narendra Maun Modi. This is the situation," Yechury quipped.
CPI national secretary D Raja, who also addressed the protesters, echoed Yechury views saying the decision has caused "unprecedented financial turmoil" in the country and subjected people to "huge hardships, unimaginable miseries and humiliations".
"Now Modi is trying to abuse opposition parties as though
we are all protecting corruption and black money. Modi should understand the Left has been fighting black money and corruption," Raja said.
The Left leader said it is Modi who should be held responsible if the Parliament doesn't function.
Meanwhile, replying to a query about bringing funding to political parties under the ambit of RTI, Yechury demanded stopping of corporate funding to political parties.
Besides Yechury and Raja, leaders of CPI(ML)-Liberation, All India Forward Bloc, Revolutionary Socialist Party, SUCI(C) and Communist Ghadar Party of India took part in the protest.